Friday, November 16, 2012

Epic European Tour, Part III: The Ship!

And now the ship!!!  We boarded the Liberty of the Seas in the Barcelona port, and though we had to wait in a pretty long line, the process was fairly painless.  We had our pictures taken and were handed our SeaPasses and then we boarded!  I haven't been on a cruise ship since I was 14 or so, and Julie never has, so it was pretty exciting for us all.  It's amazing how quickly it turns from looking like a gangway to looking like a really fancy hotel.

We checked into our fancy (and tiny) stateroom, right next door to Elise and Jeff, and decided to look around!  The ship was really big, and included so many amazing things.  There were the usual things that we just walked past, like a big casino and clubs and bars all over the place, but there was also a really cool Royal Promenade walkway with shops and food, a karaoke lounge of course, some great dining options, including the buffet of course, some really fun pools and hot tubs, some things we didn't even look at like a spa and a fitness center (though I did try out the outdoor running track), and even a cool sports area that had a basketball court, a Flowrider, a rock climbing wall, a mini-golf course.  There were also fancy theaters, and an ice skating rink!  It was kind of amazing.  Observe:
It's big.
Here we go!
Our room!  It's itty but functional.  We only wished we had an outside room so we would get a little porthole of SOME kind, but this was what our great deal gave us, and they say the inside rooms experience less rocking with the waves.  It was also nice and DARK when it came time to sleep.
The Wife reads about upcoming activities and gets comfortable.
Like we do.
The Wife gets even more comfortable.
Adios, Barcelona.
The water!  We're on it!
What a pretty girl.
Those people look like they're sitting inside the logo sign.
Adventure is out there!
Look at those penguins!
Then we went to the deck for embarkation.  It was very windy.
Landing pad.
Stars:  They sit on benches.
Elise and Jeff with their unique twist on this lil' Titanic moment.
I don't know why this is a Thing to do on a cruise, why you would want to emulate anything specifically Titanic is beyond me.
Reliving one of my very vivid memories from our last cruise.  Lean into the wind!
Just checking out the pool deck.
Fun pool!  But the water was FREEZING.
Our first of many visits to the buffet at the Windjammer Cafe.
Even more fashionable.
The angle alone makes this one the most fashionable of all.  Also the shoulder shrug.
I think I'm saluting here, though I have no recollection of this picture being taken.

It will be mine.  Oh yes, it will be mine.
Just look at this Royal Promenade!  Can you believe this is on a ship?
The Wife apparently can.
This was at the entrance to the Sphinx Lounge.  It's heavily themed.
Then we had to do our obligatory mustering (or, as Jeff might say, mustarding).
They didn't make us put on our life jackets.  But Elise did... something with her hands...  And Jeff may or may not have been striking a dramatic pose.
Then we had a much-needed rest, and reconvened for a little more exploration at eveningtime, including karaoke, where Elise and I did our best to sing a little Aida, and I did my standard of Bridge Over Troubled Water, and thence to our delicious dinner in the Very Fancy Dining room.  It felt a little odd to eat in there in street clothes, but we worked it.  We had arranged for a dining program that allowed us to schedule dinner at whatever time we wanted each day so we didn't have to stick to a strict schedule or eat with strangers.  We didn't have the same serving staff every time, but we had a couple of favorites who waited on us a couple of times.
Ever since my brother was a star on our first cruise for performing Imagine in the cruise talent show I knew I wanted to do something like such someday.  And now I have.
Just how I do.
First desserts!
Julie looks dubious, but really she was just sleepy.  She loved her treat.
Elise loved hers too.
And then we had to hit the hay so we would be ready for our first port (no time to waste!) the very next morning in France!  A whole new country on our journey!  Hold onto your hats, a tale of two French ports is coming up shortly.


  1. Elise was making a square while we mustered! I can't remember why but we were saying all these square synonyms...I think we were directing them at her but I can't remember for sure or why. But she's making a square!

    I am still perfectly happy about not having a porthole. I shan't change my mind!

  2. There are few places more fun and exciting than a cruise ship. Love that you went.